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March 31, 2017

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IMORE — a haven for secret affairs

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Cheating partners take note — a secret hideout promising protection against any caught-in-the-act moments or potentially career-killing exposure — IMORE, the "love motel" just outside Taipei — now keeps secret affairs undisclosed with layers of special security.

"Our motel is completely guarded against any cheater-catchers," boasted the motel manager Chang Hui-chuan.

The love motel concept originated in Japan in the 1960's where lovers opted to go to "love motels" instead of regular hotels for added privacy and the flexibility of a short "rest" — hourly rates. In Taiwan, it has grown into a profitable money-making business during the past few years, providing luxurious settings such as private pools in rooms.

As high-profile officials and athletes have been smeared by infidelity scandals in recent news, IMORE uses advanced technology to guard against potential cheater-catchers. Located in Yungho City and a short 10-minute drive from Taipei City, guests aged from 25 to 45 arrive at this two-story townhouse-style motel to unfold their secret affair without a slice of worry.

IMORE claims to be the only love motel in Taiwan that alerts guests of the arrival of a suspicious partner through a surveillance camera. "Our attendant will secretly press a button, and a live image of the cheater-catcher will show up on the television screen in the guest's room," Chang said.

To constantly protect cheaters with advanced technology, Chang said they are acquiring a permit to install an anti-GPS tracking system. With this system, any GPS tracking bugs installed in a guest's vehicle without his or her knowledge will malfunction within 200 meters of the motel, Chang said.

The motel even has a secret escape route behind each townhouse and a standby male body double to act as the room guest in case an angry partner passes through all the security barriers. As guests arrive in a car, they are first stopped by a parking gate and a motel attendant for a check-in process that ensure guest anonymity.

"To check-in, you don't have to get out of your car or even show your face or photo ID," Chang said. Romantically inclined customers simply drop their windows slightly to inform motel attendant of a short two-hour rest. Although a photo ID is needed for overnight stays, the attendant will not check to see if the face of the guest matches the photo on the ID, according to Chang.

At the same time, a motel attendant covers up visitors' license plates with paper to avoid identification by private detectives. Then guests drive directly into an underground garage attached to their private townhouse. In IMORE, amorous guests don't need to fear calls from boyfriends or fiancees back home. Every room is equipped with a sound system that reproduces eight different noise settings: a bank, MRT station, train station, road intersection, auto shop, beach, mall and even a karaoke lounge.

"Just tell your wife you are at a bank and press the button for that function, and sounds such as phones ringing or the voice of a teller speaking will play in the background," Chang said. As the cheaters indulge in their secret business inside the room, the motel remains on high-alert for any suspicious cheater-catchers. "If a suspicious person or a car is spotted wandering around the hotel, our 24/7 patrons will ask them to leave the site immediately," the manger said.

Among the motel's 70 rooms, some are as large as 60 ping (1 ping=36 square feet) and over a third is decorated in sexual themes for the passionate lovers. A two-hour stay in IMORE starts around NT$1,200 up to NT$2,500 for presidential suites.

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